Story of Recovery: Mark Davis

Opening excerpt from my new book, GOD IN CHAINS:


So this is what it's like to not know what you believe anymore.
You have just awoken. You stare up from the bed at a ceiling that is no longer there. It has collapsed, too heavy to be held up any longer by the walls that used to support it. You look to every side of you and discover that indeed the walls no longer stand.
Yet, you have not been hit by the fallen wreckage.
It's as if everything once solid has become liquid or gas.
Revealing something that has been hidden behind it all this time.
So this is what it's like to not know what you believe anymore.


Your faith has been the focus of your life for quite a long time now. How long has it been? You were sixteen when you were born again and now you're 24. That makes eight years.
Gone, the believer as solid as rock. Who acted as if he practically owned god. Who thought he was able to tell who was saved and who was not. Who regularly warned, even taunted, his schoolmates about the "fact" that they were going to go to hell because they didn't believe like this believer believed.
Oh, how simple and sharp was the line of separation between the saved and the not saved.
Have you been born again -- yes or no?
Have you turned your life over to jesus -- yes or no?
Do you believe in the god of the bible/
Or no/
Gone, the one who answered Yes! to all of the above. Who held so firmly in his heart that all people, including him, were sinners falling short of the glory of god, deserving the punishment of death for having sinned, and needing a salvation no mere mortal could provide.
Gone, the one who found in jesus this salvation. Who came to believe that god the father had sent his only son down to earth to live a sinless human life and then give up that life, taking upon himself the punishment of death, for the sake of the helpless sinner. Gone, he who believed that jesus, after suffering this death, then rose from the grave, achieving the final victory over death for all those who would put their faith in him.
Gone, the one who claimed to believe in not just any god, but in ?the one and only true god,? the god of the bible, the sift by which false gods were separated from the true -- and false believers from the saved.
Gone, the one who was thus set apart from the unbelieving world. From those who had no god. From those who put their faith in false gods. From those who saw only what they wanted to see and threw out the rest. From those who stained the truth with their own agendas, their own feelings, their own stories.
Gone, the one who rejoiced in the knowledge that his beliefs were above his own fallen nature. For, as far as beliefs went, there was no falling short allowed. Humankind had been presented a test, and only those who answered it right were saved.
Yours was either the true god or not.
You were either right or wrong.
Saved or not.


Part memoir, part poetry, part theological exploration?
Mark Davis? debut work of prose, GOD IN CHAINS, is indeed the telling of a deeply personal journey: he is raised Catholic, has a born-again experience in his late teens, proceeds to ?inform? his non-believing friends that they are going to hell? until some years later?
GOD IN CHAINS opens with the very real moment when Mark awoke in his bedroom and realized his grip on those beliefs (or their grip on him?) had loosened.
There?s someone else in the room with him, telling the story.
Can this voice be trusted?
Should anyone trust it?
Should you?

god in chains is a companion piece to the mark davis and the inklings CD, because there?s nothing outside